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Friday November 13 is the D-day for Articoli 31’s fans as many of them have long been unto something though they knew not when the time would have come.
After the much appreciated surprise that Bob Dylan has made them in choosing their version of “Come una pietra scalciata” (Like a rolling stone) as soundtrack for his movie “Masked and anonymous” and the just as appetizing taste of “La mia ragazza mena” (My girlfriend beats me), radio hit in the parade of the most sold singles for over ten weeks, the time has come for the release of JAx and DjJad’s new album comprised of 16 colorful previously unreleased pieces that flow smoothly amidst irony and amusement, anger and sweetness. Direct songs with an edge as these are, they are a source of genuine energy.
Pure adrenalin as Jax sings in the intro to the album: “this is soft pop but heavy as an elephant’s drop…it is chaotic methodical music, it isn’t made to meditate…”.
For the Thirty-first Article, strong of its ten year-long experience and constant work as “blue-collar singers” in their tiny artisan factory, this is the seventh album and it is released exactly two years after “Domani smetto” (Tomorrow I’m quitting), the album that marked their definite departure from hip-hop and the consequential opening to a greater audience as well as musical horizons.
Rebels in their DNA while musically outrageous, or rather “mutant beasts” as they love to define themselves, these two musicians grow, change though they do not intend to embody a single musical attitude for the present time. On the contrary, in 2004 they will give way to a new kind of pop: that’s it! Real original Italian pop. One must take it as it comes, and savored and enjoyed naturally for what it is. There are no counter-indications, a prolonged use may give dependence, though. In countertendency to the sampling fashion, their album is entirely played out, and it sounds completely different from what can be heard around these days.
Somewhat “politically incorrect” and irreverent, undoubtedly “gut and heart”, the album is titled ITALIANO MEDIO (Average Italian), provoking and amusing as the cover’s middle finger shown from a hand bearing the colors of the Italian flag. A voluntary play on symbols that can signify, on the one hand, the acknowledgement one’s own identity and the awareness of its roots while, on the other hand, it is a plea not to take oneself ever too seriously.
Just as Jax, himself, does in the ironic self-portrait of “La canzone del ditto” (The finger song) in which he describes all of his defects and imperfections less one, that is his middle finger that he can exhibit, in all its “perfection”, to express his discomfort vis à vis a society that tends to flatten and uniform everything and everyone. Yet, he is also sarcastic when in the song “L’Italiano medio” (The average Italian) he depicts the portrait of an average Italy concerned with consumer goods, football, and TV in which “Luttazzi[the “Italian Letterman”] is no where to be found”.
There are no fixed rules to listen to this album. It immediately transmits positive sensations. One hears in it the genuine, and at times even touching, autobiographical story of growth and first-hand experiences recounted naturally.
In the music composition DjJad lets out all of the creativity of the cultured and refined disc jockey he is, strong of his 6000 record-library and his predilection for soul music as well as ska, reggae, and punk. Very diverse sonorities amongst them often cohabit in a single piece, thus creating amusing contrasts and rendering the whole into a colorful rainbow of original sounds.
The rest is Jax’s task. He is the responsible for writing, by letting thoughts flow unhampered as they come, and singing the lyrics.
In “1972” he recalls the pain of adolescence, that age in which one sees “the future as a blur”. In “Senza dubbio” (Without doubt) he recounts the first flair for a girl and what one does to conquer her,<
17.11.2003CD BMG 82876571102
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|3.||La mia ragazza mena||3:15|
|4.||La canzone del dito||3:15|
|6.||La nuove stella del pop||3:40|
|7.||A pugni col mondo||3:55|
|9.||I consigli di un pirla||3:45|
|12.||Cara mia ex||4:11|
|14.||Sputate al re||3:22|
|16.||Commodore 64 vs. PC||2:36|
|17.||Il mio viaggio||3:58|
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